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Cisco says this week’s layoffs were announced last November

Updated: Aug 16, 2023

Updated on [21/07/23]: This post has been refreshed with the latest news as of today.


But employees say whether the layoffs are fresh or previously announced, they’re still losing their jobs.


Cisco Layoffs: Networking Giant Lays Off Employees Across Business Units in Fresh Round of Job Cuts


This week, several former and current Cisco employees took to social media, sharing their claims of internal layoffs.


According to the company, these layoffs are part of a restructuring plan initially announced last November.


Cisco laid off a total of 673 workers as part of a "limited business restructuring" announced in November last year.



Cisco’s last major round of layoffs impacted more than 4,000 employees in late 2022. The layoffs in November were part of a $600 million restructuring plan.


According to a post, it was suggested that Cisco employees in the data center and security divisions experienced the most significant impact. The post stated, "Security (SBG) Data Center (ACI - most impact) TAC (Including Bangalore team) Most IT support in India All BU contractors reduced Will further continue, be prepared."


In a different comment, it was noted that "Many US-based directors are no longer with the company. Despite data center being a growth market (as evident with Arista), Cisco is letting go of valuable expertise."


However, another commenter disagreed, stating, "I believe the most significant impact this time is on Collab China engineering, with over 400 people affected."


Online discontent appears to be particularly directed toward Cisco's leadership. One user expressed their frustration by posting a URL link to a January interview with Cisco CEO Chuck Robbins. In the interview, Robbins stated that the company had no additional job cuts planned after the layoff announcement of 4,100 employees made in November.


Reportedly, 371 workers have been fired from the company’s headquarters and 222 workers, which includes primarily engineers and technical employees, were asked to leave its Milpitas office.



The job cuts come after the company posted its largest quarterly revenue total in its history during the first fiscal quarter of 2023. While it is unclear whether Cisco will conduct more layoff rounds, it was reported last year that Cisco will lay off 5% of its workforce, or more than 4,000 employees.


In its first quarter earning report (Q1 2023), Cisco reported $13.6 billion in revenue, up 6 percent year over year.


What did Cisco say?


According to a report by Fierce Telecom, Cisco verified that a round of layoffs occurred this week. However, the company asserted that these layoffs were part of the 4,100 job cuts that had been previously announced in November. Specifics regarding the number of affected employees or the types of positions impacted in this week's layoffs were not disclosed by the company. Cisco's complete statement is provided below:


"These recent notifications are part of the rebalancing effort we began in November 2022, which included a limited restructuring impacting our real estate portfolio and approximately 5% of our workforce.


As we announced then, this is not about cost savings as we have roughly the same number of employees as we did before the process began. This rebalancing is about prioritizing investments in our transformation, to meet and exceed our customers' expectations in the changing technology landscape.


We will continue to do everything we can to help place affected employees in open roles and offer extensive support including generous severance packages."


It is, however, unclear whether Cisco will conduct more layoff rounds.


Cisco is just one of many tech behemoths laying off employees as the industry experiences a downturn after the coronavirus pandemic and rising inflation.


Companies including Meta, Amazon, and Twitter have laid off hundreds and thousands of employees in the last couple of months.


Cisco had said in a statement that "we didn't take this decision lightly, and we will offer those impacted by extensive support, including generous severance packages".


One such impacted employee posted that around 45 people from his team were fired. The post read, “Impacted by Cisco layoffs today. In our org infrastructure and cloud services, about 450 employees were impacted (sic).”


“It's (layoffs are) across all BUs,” the techie said. It is worth noting that the company had announced last month that it would downsize its workforce to cut down on costs amid the ongoing economic slowdown.


Another employee working in the product team of Cisco noted that employees have two options for the last working day, February or March. Employees choosing the February date as their last working day would get one month's pay extra.


The employee said, “The laid-off employees get to choose if they want their last day in Feb or Mar. 6 months severance starts from today though. So, if they leave on Feb, 4 more months of pay, and if they leave on Mar, 3 more months (sic).”


Another employee highlighted that the layoffs were across business units and were not limited to specific operations.


Rightsizing certain businesses: CEO


In December, Cisco chairman and CEO Chuck Robbins said the company would "be reluctant to go into a lot of detail here until we're able to talk to them.


I would say that what we're doing is rightsizing certain businesses," he said. "You can just assume that we're going to – we're not actually – there's nothing that's a lower priority, but we are rightsizing certain businesses," he told the analysts.


"Rebalancing" act, said CFO


Cisco chief financial officer Scott Herren described the job cuts as a "rebalancing" act. "Don't think of this as a headcount action that is motivated by cost savings. This really is a rebalancing. As we look across the board, there are areas that we would like to invest in more, Chuck just talked about them. Security, our move to platforms, and more cloud-delivered products," Herren said during the company's earnings call.


Amazon, Vimeo layoffs


The development comes a few days after Amazon announced that it laid off 18,000 of its employees in the last two months. In a note to employees, company CEO Andy Jessy said, "Amazon has weathered uncertain and difficult economies in the past, and we will continue to do so.


These changes will help us pursue our long-term opportunities with a stronger cost structure; however, I’m also optimistic that we’ll be inventive, resourceful, and scrappy in this time when we’re not hiring expansively and eliminating some roles," the CEO told the company employees.


Vimeo CEO Anjali Sud also announced that the company has decided to cut its workforce by 11% due to an "uncertain economic environment.” This is the second round of job cuts in the company after it reduced the headcount by 6% in July last year.

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Guest
Jul 21, 2023

I worked there in the 2010s and vaguely recall regular layoffs in summer time.

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Guest
Jul 21, 2023

Working at Cisco is like gambling at a casino. Making it to grade 12 without getting laid off is hard.


You work hard. You are never in the lower 5%. Your performance reviews always exceeds expectations. Your manager wants to retain you so they give raises and bonuses. Ironically, the more you make, the more you become a target for layoffs. Especially true when your team has already been through multiple layoff rounds and you have no more contractors and crash dummy hires to layoff.


It’s almost inevitable that the house wins and you’re eventually laid off. At least their severance packages can be sweet.

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Guest
Jul 21, 2023
Replying to

So true!

Some teams are very bad in layoff terms. Not sure why they even exist.

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